- Acquiring doctrinal knowledge should not be confused with growing in grace. While it is important to improve our understanding of the precepts of God’s Word, this is not necessarily paralleled to a deepening of spirituality. The study of the Word is vital to Christian growth, but it must be applied to our lives, and not be only head knowledge.
- In this quarter’s lessons, we are studying Christian characteristics and attributes, some of which are found in 2 Peter 1:5-6. Knowledge is one of those attributes. Why is it so important?
- Read the dictionary definitions for the words knowledge and wisdom, and then explain in your own words the difference between the two. Give a hypothetical example of each.
- How is general knowledge acquired? List ways in which knowledge of spiritual things is acquired.
- Human knowledge, apart from divine knowledge, is not capable of satisfying the soul of man. As we search the Scriptures we find some references to this effect. Look them up and write the main idea of each verse.
- 1 Corinthians 1:19
- 1 Corinthians 3:19
- 2 Timothy 3:7
- A child gains much of his acquired knowledge based on experience. How is the concept of knowledge by experience also true in the spiritual sense?
- What must we do to build the foundation for the right kind of knowledge and spiritual discernment? In John 5:39 and Romans 15:4 you will find the answer.
- How might the Lord increase our spiritual knowledge through correction? See Hebrews 12:5-11. At what point does the knowledge gained through correction become wisdom?
- For personal thought and meditation, figure the amount of time that you study for general knowledge (school, job, etc.), _____. Then add the time spent in recreation, sleep, etc., _____. Now figure the time spent in study for spiritual knowledge, including Sunday school, church, prayer meetings, daily spiritual study, etc., _____. If your time spent for general knowledge plus time spent in extracurricular activities outweighs the time spent to gain spiritual knowledge, it points out the importance of being sure that the time given for our daily Bible study and worship is quality time. We should also take advantage of each opportunity to worship together and fellowship with those who are of like mind so we can grow spiritually.
The Apostle Peter, through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, has given us a formula. We read: “And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.” It is promised that “if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:5-8). With a promise such as this, we would do well to dig deep into the full meanings of these qualities. We, as Christians, must add them to our spiritual character so we can fulfill Christ’s charge to us to bring forth fruit.
It is possible that Peter presented these attributes in an intended progression. Taking these attributes as a basis for our quarter, we have included several others which are important to the development of Christian character.
As you study each of these lessons, be aware of how these attributes overlap and build on each other.